Lutherans, Catholics Mark 500th Anniversary of Reformation

The year 2017 marks 500 years since Martin Luther famously nailed his “95 Theses” to the church door in Wittenberg, Germany. Although he did not intend to start a movement, his action is recognized as the start of the protestant Reformation. Over the past 50 years, Catholics and Lutherans have been working to overcome centuries of division.

To recognize the progress made and to look toward a collaborative future, a Commemoration service takes place Monday, October 9th, 6:00 p.m., at St. Therese Little Flower Church, 875 E. Plumb Lane, Reno. Rev. Jorge Herrera and Rev. Michael Patterson will preside. The Most Reverend Bishop Randolph R. Calvo and Rev. Kathryn Gulbranson share sermon duties while other clergy of both denominations, and a combined choir from local parishes, will join them.

In 2013 Catholics and Lutherans issued a joint statement titled, “From Conflict to Communion,” which recognized that the beliefs that unite are far greater than the differences. Included in the joint statement are five “Imperatives,” or goals, for which each member of both denominations should strive. One is “Catholics and Lutherans should witness together to witness to the mercy of God in proclamation and service to the world.” Both denominations recognize that service to the world includes caring for those in need in our own community. Offerings received at this joint commemoration benefit Catholic Charities and Faith Lutheran Food Pantry, helping hungry people in this area.

Lutheran Engagement and Advocacy in Nevada exists to bring to public attention the needs of disadvantaged people. LEAN advocates at the Nevada Legislature to reduce barriers that keep people in poverty. However LEAN also works in the community, and to that end, will donate $1,000 to the offering for the commemoration.

Participants in the Commemoration service include:

For the Roman Catholic Church (Diocese of Reno)

Most Reverend Bishop Randolph R. Calvo, Diocese of Reno

Presider – Rev. Jorge Herrera, St Therese Church of the Little Flower

Rev. Robert Chorey – Chancellor, Diocese of Reno

Rev. Chuck Durante – St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Community

For the Lutheran Church (ELCA)

Rev. Kathryn Gulbranson, Assistant to the Bishop, Sierra Pacific Synod

Presider – Rev. Michael Patterson – Gift of Grace Lutheran Church, Fernley

Rev. Mary Lou Petitjean – Christ the King Lutheran Church, Tahoe City

Rev. Erik Allen – Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, Reno

Rev. Thomas Beck – Faith Lutheran Church, Reno

Rev. Scott Trevithick – Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Reno

Rev. Chad Adamik – St. Paul’s Lutheran Family, Carson City

For additional information about the Commemoration service, contact Rev. Michael Patterson, 775-575-5400